ST 2770 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2770 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2770 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a number of the more difficult clues and provide hints for them.

Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct a “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow:


1a    Unreported swim, oddly, that’s used to evaluate speed of performer in pool? (5,3,6)
This anagram (oddly) of UNREPORTED SWIM is used to evaluate the speed of a performer in the typing pool, not the swimming pool!

9a    Turn back European, very amorous type (7)
E(uropean, V(ery) and an amorous type, all reversed (back)

12a    Think about and study model (11)
A three-letter verb meaning to study followed by a model or pattern

15a    Totally destroy author of fiction, initially (5,3)
A verb meaning to author followed by OF and the initial letter of F(iction)

17a    Crewman grumpy about daughter that’s in silly fashion (8)
Our usual crewman or sailor followed by an adjective meaning grumpy around D(aughter)

23a    Fruit not given by uncaring person (3)
The fruit that couldn’t be given by an uncaring person in a well-known phrase

26a    Unrealistic notion from that fellow in cold period (7)
Put the pronoun meaning “that fellow) between C(old) and a long period of time

27a    Line of pupils rushes in simulated distress (9,5)
A line of pupils being led by a teacher followed by a verb meaning rushes


1d    Groups that investigate dreadfully irate rows about family doctor (7,7)
An anagram (dreadfully) of IRATE ROWS around a three-letter word meaning family and a (family) doctor

4d    It might direct Romeo and Juliet, for example, to go off together? (6)
A direction requesting that all actors leave the stage

5d    Unusually blue pair of rooks nested in my bush (8)
An anagram (unusually) of BLUE and the chess notation for a R(ook) repeated (pair of) inside MY

7d    Destructive formation ran amok amidst commotion (7)
An anagram (amok) of RAN inside a commotion (2-2)

8d    Revolutionary red flag was sort that’s clearly made in Irish city (9,5)
An anagram (revolutionary) of RED FLAG WAS SORT

16d    Land in part of garden that’s ruined (8)
A verb meaning to land or get off a vehicle inside a part of a garden

20d    Turned over big cheese in fabric (7)
The reversal (turned over in a down clue) of an adjective meaning big or stout followed by a type of cheese

25d    Don’t go straight, taking part in larceny (3)
Hidden inside (taking part in) the clue

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Today it’s Happy Birthday to Maggie Gyllenhaal (37) and Frank Bruno (53)


29 comments on “ST 2770 (Hints)

  1. 2*/4*. Perfect to brighten up a dull Sunday morning.

    After a slow start I really enjoyed this puzzle. My slow start actually had nothing to do with the crossword itself; finding where it was located in the paper proved to be the biggest challenge. The ST in their wisdom have decided to hide all the puzzles at the back of a new separate TV guide.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to BD.

        1. Nous aussi, merci à v et bd pour agréable matinée au lit avec les miettes (de pain grille) habituelles.

          M et Mme T

    1. Yes I had great trouble actually finding the puzzle pages as well. The papers arrive on a Sunday morning and the first thing I do is break into the sellophane bag and empty out all the advertising ???? that’s in amongst the magazines and then try and sort out all the various bits of the paper.

      I’ve lost count of the numerous sections and now there’s this new TV bit with the puzzles tacked inside the back cover – why do the Telegraph keep on doing this rubbish?

      Get one format and stick to it – continuous change means a loss of identity!

      Getting back to the actual puzzle, I really enjoyed this one, some decent anagrams and nice cryptic clues – not to difficult but fun nevertheless!

      Onward and upward!

      1. It’s even worse in the European editions.
        It’s usually in the Sports Supplement which you’ve thrown away before you realise you’ve thrown away the crossword as well.

    2. Seems like our decision to ditch the paper version completely was a wise one! There’s never a problem finding things on the iPad and I am more than happy to be free of all the junk that comes with the dead tree edition.
      Eerily quiet here today, a shame because Virgilius never disappoints yet his puzzles attract far less comment. Where are you all?

      1. Yes, I agree. He is so brilliant, I look forward to his Sunday offering and I would think many others would too. Where is everyone?

      2. I’m here – shall I try to make it noisy? Been in London all day so only just done crossword – about to comment in a minute.

    3. Talk about playing ‘hunt the crossword’ – took me ages and all the other puzzles are in disarray all over the place in our kitchen – oh dear!

  2. Well it took me a long time to solve the first puzzle – Find the Crossword. Having achieved that, it was a great pleasure to tackle another excellent Virgilius puzzle. Always good fun and not too hard today – many thanks. Thanks BD for the hints.

  3. An easier solve than usual with 5 anagrams.17a, 15a, 23a, and 6d stood out amoung many great clues. Thanks Virgilius and BD.

  4. I can’t believe I’m the fourth to comment here in Miami, how weird is that? Must have been a lot of good parties in UK last night.
    Great puzzle today, Virgilius never fails us. Last one in was 8d, but on review, I can’t understand why, it’s one of the easiest! My fave has to be 23a, succinct, bringing huge grin.
    Thanks to Virgilius, genius, and to BD for entertaining review.

  5. Started off rather slowly but then got 23a, which, like Merusa, made me smile. Pottered on steadily, but am ashamed to say (considering it’s one of my fields) that 4d was my last in. Many thanks to setter, and to BD for his indefatigable help. We celebrated George Herbert at this morning’s service. Mr P is familiar with his poetry, but I’ve got some catching up to do. Poppy seems only interested with words that rhyme with dinner (or Banana Joe)!

  6. Thanks to Virgilius and to Big Dave for the hints. Another very good and enjoyable puzzle from Virgilius. Also had trouble finding the paper version. Favourite was 1a, just needed the hint for 4d, had heard of it, but had forgotten. Was 2*/4* for me. Dull day in Central London.

  7. Big Dave – I am converted. I asked the newsagent to deliver paper and thanks to your encouragement managed to finish my very first Sunday Telegraph crossword. Unlike others I had no idea where to look for it so started with an advantage, perhaps being a newcomer is not always a bad idea.

    1. Definitely an advantage in just hunting the crossword – the rest of us didn’t find it where it’s always been so were completely lost. Oh dear, for the second time in commenting and you should see our kitchen – paper everywhere – husband in despair!

          1. Now you’ve made me cry, again! See what you’ve done!
            I try SO hard to do hints with pictures – you’ve no idea. I’ll keep trying . . .

          2. I obviously should have followed your advice here sometime ago as I bought an Ipad Air and now have lost and can’t retrieve the Wifi connection with it.

          3. My OH has just bought himself a Samsung Galaxy to add to the pile of goodies he already owns. It is of course the present love of his life having taken over from a Google Nexus. I have a Nook HD which suits me although I must admit that I am tempted.

  8. Finished today with only a little help. The SW corner took longest, but I think we’ve got it right. Thank you setter and BD.

  9. **/****. Enjoyable puzzle. I like long clues around the edges which I think helps me get going quickly. Veryy cold this morning but beautiful clear blue skies.

  10. Well – where should I start? Late commenting today as we’ve been with a daughter in London today.
    As others have already said – where was the crossword? Eventually located it but kitchen looks like a paper chase. Oh dear!
    I thought it was lovely – just what I needed.
    Have to confess that, although 1a was very obviously an anagram, it was my last answer and I needed alternate letters in before I got it. Successful misdirection or what? As a previously competitive swimmer (I swam for Worcestershire as a teenager) I was on completely the wrong track.
    I’ll keep this short, for a change – need supper very soon. I liked most of these clues but tops (completely different to favourites) were 1, 23 and 27a and 1, 5 and 8d.
    With thanks to Virgilius for the great crossword and to BD for the hints (and the pictures! and

  11. I agree – it was annoying to have to search for the crossword which to my mind is completely illogically inside the Telelvision & radio section. However I have to say that I do approve of the new format in one way in that the TV and radio programmes for each day appear together avoiding the need to go to and fro from front to back. Back to puzzle – I found it quite testing and abandoned it halfway at first sitting but pennies began to drop on returning later in the day – possibly stimulated by a “couple” of glasses of grape nectar. All’s well that ends well! Thanks Virgilius and BD. ****/***.

  12. Very busy yesterday so didn’t get a chance to look at this until this morning. Very enjoyable, more so because I had to rely on H&T only at the very end. Managed to complete in what for me is a good time.

    Favourite 26 mainly because I didn’t know this meaning of the word.

    Agree with comments re siting of puzzles

    Thank you BD and Virgillius

  13. Doing the weekend crosswords a bit late. Enjoyed this one. Some nice long anagrams and amusing surfaces.
    Thanks Virgilius and BD.

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